American Speech-Language-Hearing Association celebrates Better Hearing and Speech Month

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association celebrates Better Hearing and Speech Month

Dyersburg, TN 5/1/2008- Since 1927, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association celebrates Better Hearing and Speech Month each May.
Speech and language disorders can take many forms and can limit academic achievement, social adjustment, and career advancement. An individual may be born with a speech or language disorder, or it may be caused by accidental injury or illness. “Fortunately, most people with speech and language problems can be helped,” said Laura Mulvany, speech-langauge pathologist with SportsPlus Rehab Center in Dyersburg. “Even if the problem cannot be eliminated, we can teach people with speech and language problems strategies to help them cope. People may not fully regain their capacity to speak and understand, but a speech-language pathologist can help them live more independently.”
Speech-language pathologists are the professionals who treat all types of speech, language, and related disorders. They hold at least a master’ s degree and are certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Speech-language pathologists work in schools, private practice, hospitals, clinics, and other health and education settings.

Additionally, this month of awareness is a good time to analyze your own hearing and determine if you are one of the estimated 28 million Americans who have a hearing loss that can be treated. You may have a hearing loss if you:
• frequently ask people to repeat themselves
• often turn your ear toward a sound to hear it better
• understand people better when you wear your glasses or look directly at their faces
• lose your place in group conversations
• keep the volume on your radio or TV at a level that others say is too loud
• have pain or ringing in your ears
• have concerns regarding your child’s hearing and/or development of speech and language skills
“People who see themselves in these statements, or see a child demonstrating these behaviors, should see an audiologist for a hearing test,” said audiologist Damaris Cook, of MedSouth Medical Center Audiology Clinic. “Even a very slight hearing loss can have an impact on your daily life,” said Cook. “There is no reason for anyone to miss all the important sounds of life.”
An annual hearing checkup is a good idea for people age 45 and up, according to audiologists, the professionals who specialize in preventing, identifying, assessing, and treating hearing disorders. Even newborn babies can have their hearing tested.
Audiologists can prescribe hearing aids and assistive listening devices, and they can teach people with hearing loss how to concentrate on hearing all sounds.
Speech-language pathologists and audiologists are certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and in Tennessee are licensed by the state.
The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) is the national professional, scientific and credentialing association for more than 114,000 audiologists, speech-language pathologists and speech, language, and hearing scientists.
Posted 4.28.08

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